RestoReview: Brunch at Osteria Morini

Dear Friends and Eaters,

I usually don’t do brunch and here is why. My body does not retain the information that it the weekend and I can sleep longer. The alarm clock in my head keeps ringing and prodding me to get up and do something useful instead of sleeping. So I get up and have breakfast with the necessary shot of expresso to jump start my brain. And then it hits me: I wanted to have brunch today! It is Sunday…. it means brunch! By that time the damage is done: no brunch for Serena!

Recently, while the Pirate was away on business to Barcelona, I decided it was time for me to go out and have brunch, even if that meant having breakfast early and brunch late. So I was wondering downtown and I stopped by Osteria Morini.  It was late even for brunch… more like a late lunch, but I was starving.  I had been to Osteria Morini when it first opened and I found the food good but a bit boring for an Italian who has been exposed to the marvels of pasta since she was born. I could understand the attraction for a non Italian patron, though. The real problem I had was the service and the fact that the hostess would make rounds in the dining room with pen and paper to figure out how much time it would take to turn each table. I found this practice rude.

Fortunately when I went back for brunch at 3.00 PM on a saturday, there was trying to turn my table in 30 minutes and the restaurant, usually very busy, had a more laidback feel and I have a great experience.

After the Bloody Mary (de rigeur if you are having brunch) I ordered from the brunch menu an egg dish that features truffle creamed spinach and mortadella croquettes.  It was rich comfort food with a very innovative approach to Italian and American traditions.  For dessert I ordered a gianduia (hazelnut and chocolate) budino, that looked like a chocolate panna cotta but has a decadent sultry quality to it.

I really enjoyed the food, the ambiance and the service. Maybe the secret to improve my relationship with this restaurant is to get there when no line is in sight!